We will all have changed our clocks last weekend and are now getting use to the nights drawing in. There is also the change in the weather and the sense that winter is now on it ways. We have even started to experience the first frosts.
How does this changing of the seasons relate to the marketing of property?
Selling rural properties
Rural properties look their best in the Spring and Summer and so that time of year is always going to producing the feel good factor. The leaf on the tree and the grass growing will make the properties and the countryside look it’s best. The market for rural and village properties is therefore getting harder as well approach Christmas.
I believe though that town properties are not so influenced by the seasons and that there is still an active market whatever the time of year. There are of course distractions like the commencement of the Christmas festivities but town properties sell all year around.
With our accompanied viewing we always try and arrange them before twilight, so that prospective purchasers get to see the property in full. We also believe in having the heating on. People are confident, with a house that is too hot, that they can always turn off the heating or open the window. Properties that are cold can create the feeling that they will never warm up.
Now that we are in November we have experiences a lowering in the number of viewings that we are conducting. This is the result of many factors and seasonality is just one of them.
However as I have highlighted in this column previously, there are some good reasons to act sharpish. Certainly the government has shown no inclination to retain the £175,000 stamp duty threshold for the 1% stamp duty. At present this will revert to the lower rate of £125,000 in January. It also worth highlighting that VAT could return to 17.5% in January . VAT is applicable to the sales commission and legal fees and so there will be small increase in them.
Good reasons to buy a house now
This time of year does also produce some good reasons to buy property. Owners with empty property are never keen to pay for heating and insurance through the winter with the risks of frost of weather damage. Next year will bring a fresh crop of exciting new house to the market. The existing stock will be that little older and more stagnant to the craftily buyer and market watcher.
All the more reason to go out viewing and buying.
William Naylor is a Chartered Surveyor and Estate Agent with Naylors based at 12 The Square, Market Harborough.